Length of Course: Men 5617 m Ladies 4941 m
Type of Course: Parkland/Links
Visitors: Always welcome
Club Professional: No
Club Shop: Yes (limited)
Practice Facilities: Chipping and putting greens
Hire Facilities: Trolleys, drive carts, caddies
Catering: Bar, halfway house, functions
Location: Lyme Road South, St Francis Bay
Contact: Janine van der Merwe
Postal Address: P.O.Box 3, St Francis Bay 6312
Phone: 042 294 0467
Fax: 042 294 0917
CAPE COUNTRY HOSPITALITY
The St Francis Bay Golf Club, situated in the heart of the village, provides a less taxing, but challenging contrast to the neighbouring St Francis Links.
The course, designed by Robert Grimsdell, began as a 9-hole layout when Leighton Hulett, the visionary behind the development of St Francis Bay, opened it in 1975 as a private golf course. In subsequent years, the club, originally named the Cape St Francis Golf Club, has had a name change to the St Francis Bay Golf Club and in December 1999 another 9 holes were introduced.
It is now an impressive challenge, especially when one realises that the improvements to the course and the additional 9 holes were undertaken ‘in-house’ at a very low cost. The passion and commitment of the club members resulted in obtaining 10 new greens, planted with poa grass. There is a unique mix of a links feel and of bush and tree-lined fairways, giving a parkland atmosphere in parts, and the seaside challenge certainly provides a test. The overriding memory of playing this fairly flat layout will be that you need to ‘think’ your way around, especially if those sea breezes are in force. The course has five par 3s and the introductions of pot bunkers and shaped mounds and swales have given the course not only added challenges, but also much needed definition to many of the holes. What have remained constant over the years are the stunning sea views on offer during the round and the blending of the two differing moods, parkland and links, to add interest and variety to the experience.
Another constant experience at this club is that of traditional Cape hospitality, as regular visitors, myself included, cherish the warmth of the personnel and the members who epitomise the essence of country courtesy.
As mentioned above, it is a beautiful parkland course with a links ingredient in part. The poa greens and kikuyu fairways are in good condition and the major challenge will be the wind factor on the days you play. The feature holes here are:
9th Hole – Par – 4 Men 381 m Ladies 331 m
This hole played from an elevated tee has the village as a backdrop. The thick bush on the right beckons many an errant drive and at the green bunkers and slopes are the challenges.
12th Hole – Par – 4 Men 301 m Ladies 273 m
This short par 4 has spoilt many a round of golf here, as it easily underestimated. There is a very narrow neck into the green and it is a real risk and reward hole especially if the wind is a factor on the day.
St Francis Bay is a holiday town and much is on offer for the ‘off-course’ experiences here. There are wonderful beaches with safe swimming and windsurfers and surfers are in their paradise. A small boat harbour allows for deep-sea fishing options, while river fishing and swimming are highly popular pastimes in the area.
From the N2, turn off at the Humansdorp exit. Travel at the posted speed limit through Humansdorp and turn left at the T-junction at the bottom of the main road. 15 km to St Francis Bay. Turn left at the first entrance to St Francis Bay.